Friday, July 27, 2007


Ok. Maybe I went a bit too far in saying the team is a fucking mess. But they still seem to be spinning their wheels in a way. The trade for Schaefer doesn't seem to do much. It really doesn't make senseDonavan and Schaefer are pretty similar players. I don't see it so much as an upgrade than as a seemingly meaningless swap. Schaefer is more expensive to boot. But he did score twice as many goals, netting 12 to Donavon's six...but thats a small difference. My guess would be that Chirarelli wants one of his guys, which Schaefer obviously is as he is coming from the Sens.

My problem with the Hannu trade is I think Hannu had more value. I don't know. I feel like it could work out well, maybe this Soderberg kid will become a good player. But I don't know. Nobody does. I think we could have gotten a solid NHL scorer for him. A definate contributer.

The team is obviously banking on a kid from the monors to break onto the team score 20 or so goals. Otherwise there is no conciveable way the Bruins will score enough to win. Even with the upgrade in net and the improving defense. That's what happens when you finish 13th in the conference in goals scored and 14th goals allowed.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Hannu Traded

Well there goes the logjam in net. Hannu has been traded to the Blues for Carl Soderburg.\

I can't find much on Soderberg other than this from the Blues GM Larry Pleau:

"I like him a lot," Pleau said. "When we traded to get Keith Tkachuk and Doug Weight, we gave up some young forwards. We need skill players for our top two lines. Carl played very well on the Swedish world-junior team. I think about Christian Backman, another young Swede, who took three or four years before he came to North America. I see Soderberg taking some time and gaining success in their elite league before he tests the waters over here."

There is this too

He's also coming off a fairly serious eye injury.

I don't like this trade at all. I think that the prospects might be an even match. But I think goalies are a more valuable (both to a the team and as trade bait) than forwards. I also think Hannu is closer to being a NHLer than Soderberg. I don't particular like trading for foreign players either (I'm aware that Hannu is Finnish, but he's been playing in NA for awhile). I'd be much more comfortable with someone coming up through the AHL and being used to the North American game. I just don't think this is going to work out for the Bruins.

Also, I think Hannu was worth more on the market than this. I think they could have gotten a solid NHLer for him. This is also confusing because it flies in the face of the Fernandez signing. A signing that it is move for the team to compete now. Acquiring Soderberg may benefit the team in the future. If they want to rebuild, fine. I can deal with that. But they can't burn the candle at both ends. Its not productive.

A team should always be looking to improve and turnover is a part of every offseason. But additions like Fernandez are for a team looking for a final piece of the puzzle. Additions like Soderberg are for teams trying to start a new puzzle. The Bruins have the final piece for a puzzle they don't have and have started a new puzzle at the same time.

Did I go to far with the metaphor?

OK, well to put it plainly: The team is a fucking mess

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Widemen Signed, Minor Deals I Missed

The Bruins signed Bobby Allen and Bryan Bitz. Allen will likely be on the botto of the B's depth chart, and may end up shuttling between Providence and Boston again. Bitz just finished his college career, expect him to be in Providence awhile.

The B's also sign Matt Hendricks and Jeremy Riech. Riech seems to have become a favorite among some fans because of his tough play. He'll probably be a familiar face on Boston's fourth or checking lines.

Matt Hendricks played in Hersey last season and is more than likely going to spend some time in Providence this year. He scored 18 goals and 44 points in 65 games last season, his 3rd in the AHL, his second in which he played more than a handful of games. He's not particularly young at 26, but he did play 4 years of college hockey. He's not a prospect, but maybe he could fill in on the 4th line in Boston. More than likely this is a signing for Providence.

Also, Brenden Shanahan has signed with the Rangers as expected.

Oh well, at least Providence has added some scoring...

UPDATE: The Bruins have also signed Dennis Widemen.

Widemen will return to the Bruins for a second season season after being aquirred in the much bemoaned Brad Boyes Trade. The young puck moving defensmen will likely take regular shifts as one of the Bruins top 4 d-men, as well as finding a home on the powerplay unit. Looking at the stats I see a marked inprovement with his defense. Last season he managed to be just a -10 in the 75 games he split between Boston and ST.Louis, compared to a -31 in 67 games for the Blues in 05-06.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Roenick Retires

Jeremy Roenick has hung up his skates. I know this isn't in anyway Bruins related, and this being a Bruin blog it's off topic. But Roenick has been one of my favorite players, in a world with too much boring rhetoric and too many player with no personality, Roenick was witty quote machine that often brought much needed mainstream media exposure to the often neglected NHL.

I loved watching national broadcasts of his games, because you know he'd always be miked up and he'd always have something to say.

Yeah, he may have been a distraction to his teams, and his final seasons showed he had very little left to give on the ice. But at least he knew when to leave and I now eagerly await his broadcasting career.

Oh yeah, anyone whose played NHL '94 knows that Roenick was a beast on the Blackhawks, unstoppable really.

Table Scraps for the Bruins

After the crazy signing frenzy of Sunday I'd like to take a breather and look at what's left on the market, and what players the Bruins may target. Or that I'd like them to target.

I think the Bruins really need to target a scoring forward, as the team already addressed its goaltending (Fernandez), and grit (Thornton) and while another defensemen would be nice, I think the Bruins would benefit from just letting the young guys grow.

Here are some forwards who haven't been signed yet, that would fit the bill of a top 6 scorer:

Peter Forsberg
Anson Carter
Peter Bondra
Martin Gelinas
Mike Comrie
Brendan Shanahan

That, in all honesty, is not a very attractive list of options. Of these players, only Mike Comrie is under 30 (26) and the next youngest is Anson Carter and Forsberg at 33. Shanahan is 38 and Bondra 39, while Gelinas is 37. All of them come with significant risks, except Comrie. So guess who I'd like the Bruins to sign most of all?

Yeah, Mike Comrie. He made 3 million last season, and I think he is worth that most, and maybe should command 2 million at least. He has shown he can score in the past, and I''d prefer to sign someone who isn't old enough to have been through then past two NHL lockouts.

Last season in 65 games between Phoenix and Ottawa he put up a line of 20-25-45. He's young enough to improve that line and his career high from 05-06 of 30 goals and 30 assists would be wonderful addition. He also may benefit by not playing in Phoenix.

According to the Bruins are 5.7 million under the cap, with 18 players signed. This doesn't include Shawn Thornton, which would reduce the space to about 5.3 million. Take another million to fill out the roster and that whittles it down to 4.3 million. If we sign Comrie to a 3 million/yr contract we would only be 1.3 under the cap. That leaves little wiggle room for midseason acquisitions. However, the bruins could clear 1.2 million in cap space by moving Thomas. So I think this move is possible under the cap.

As for the other players:

Forsberg is just too injury prone, and likely to expensive for the Bruins. The only way I'd like the Bruins signing him is if its a one year deal at way below market value, say 1.5million-2. I don't see that happening, if he does get a contract h likes, he'll probably just go home to Sweden.

Carter didn't show himself to be a top six forward last season, but the yer before in Vancouver he scored 30 goals. He would be an interesting investment at a mid range contract 1.5-2, however it takes quite a leap of faith to think he'll put up those Vancouver numbers again. Also, would he even consider coming back to Boston, new GM yes, but same owner...

Bondra is like Forsberg, though no where near as complete a player, or as expensive. He's 39 and I don't think he has much left in tank.

Gelinas isn't really a top six winger, more like a very good 3rd liner. Think of PJ that scores 15-20 goals instead of 10. I'd be pretty happy with getting him, as he is a very good two way player, and that's a great commodity to have. He'd probably be my second choice, and is probably a more likely signing.

Shanahan is a great goal scorer, he had 29 goals in 67 games last season with the Rangers. But, again, how much does he have left at 39? He does spend his offseasons in Boston with his family, at his age a move closer to home may appeal to him. He made 4 million last season, which is probably just a bit too much for the Bruins, but if they can knock it down to 3-3.5 it could work. Home town discount maybe? Again, another guy who should get a one year deal because of his age, Shanny could get two, given his proven production (He hasn't slowed much), but he's at the age where after every season he has to consider hanging them up. So he might want a one year deal as well.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Bruins Trade for Manny Fernandez, sign Shawn Thornton

I really like this move. It makes the Bruins instantly better and fills the whole in net. Manny is a much better goalie than Thomas and has a proven record to back that up. He has a career GAA of 2.47 and a S% of .913. Last year he posted numbers of 2.55 and .911 in 44 games.

Hopefully he will be given the chance to carry the load as the number one starter, as that is what he wanted in leaving Minnesota. I think that he wants to prove that he is a clear number 1 goalie and that may take his play to new heights in Boston.

This move seems to mean that either Tim Thomas or Hannu Toivonen will be traded. I hope Thomas is traded because his salary is higher than Hannu's and I still believe Hannu has a bright future.

However, Hannu has more trade value and would not be served well by sitting on the bench as Manny's backup. I would not be against a trade involving Hannu if we were to get a top line forward in return. The team desperately needs some scoring. Also, trading Hannu doesn't hurt the future of the team because of the presence of Rask, who by nearly all accounts, is the best goalie prospect around.

The Bruins signed only one free agent on this crazy Sunday, Shawn Thornton. Thornton is a big winger who will likely make his home on the checking line. This isn't a very big signing, but the Boston Herald is reporting that Thornton will make 500k, close to the league minimum of 475k. Its a multi year deal, I can't seem to find the length anywhere. If I were to venture a guess I would say 3 years.

Also, while not Bruins related, Buffalo lost both Briere and Drury, any weakening of our division helps us, so that's a good thing to see.

There very many big names left on the market so I wouldn't be surprised if the Bruins didn't make anymore moves. Some of the worst contracts are given to the mid level guys out of desperation and those mistakes are the hardest to get out from under (well those and the Islanders 10 yr contract to Yashin an 15 yr deal for DiPietro). I'd look towards a trade unless the Bruins shed some salary, most likely in the form of Glenn Murray.